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Blue Jays fall short at state

Jamestown had a tough draw to open the team portion of the state high school boys tennis tournament Thursday in Grand Forks.

The Blue Jays fell 4-1 to juggernaut Grand Forks Red River, but Jamestown coach Ryan Iliff praised the effort. Jamestown's team tournament ultimately came to end falling to Minot 4-1 in a loser-out match.

"The way we competed all the way through that match, I was happy with," Iliff said of the Jays' battle with the Roughriders. "We came out strong and we liked the position we were in."

Jamestown's Baylee Hatlewick and Isaac Mimong scored a victory at No. 2 doubles, helping the Blue Jays trail just 2-1 with Connor Mullowney at No. 1 singles and Cole Bennion and Ryder Lunzman at No. 1 doubles yet to play. Hatlewick and Mimong defeated Adam Durrani and Mason Salquist 6-3, 6-4.

But Red River's Kaden Johnson won a tight contest over Mullowney 6-7(4), 7-6(8), 6-1, and Bennion and Lunzman fell 6-1, 6-2 to Gavin Loscheider and Stefan Curic. Red River had won 18 of the last 20 state team titles in boys tennis, but fell 3-2 to Fargo South in Friday's semifinals.

"We just couldn't quite get it done at the end," Iliff said. "But our backs were against the wall against a really good program and we went right at them. You have to be proud of the boys for that."

Up next was a familiar West Region foe in the form of the Magicians. It was the second time this postseason Minot handed Jamestown a 4-1 defeat.

"I think we could've written out their lineups for them," Iliff said. "We knew how they were going to approach us. It was the same lineup they tossed at us at WDA."

Mullowney scored the Jays' lone victory, taking down Mason Diehl 7-6 (12-10), 6-3, after Minot had rallied to win the first three points of the match.

State singles and doubles action begins today. Mullowney, the West Region's third seed, plays West Fargo Sheyenne's Tanner Hansen, and Hatlewick, the West's fifth seed, plays Fargo Davies' Kareem Kamel.

In doubles play, Bennion and Lunzman will start the day playing Fargo Shanley's Finnian O'Donnell and Jonah Jelinski.

"Just play with confidence and keep doing the things that got you here," Iliff said. "I also told them to enjoy the moment. We're here at state, enjoy the day."

State Boys Tennis

Team Tournament

Quarterfinals

G.F. Red River 4, Jamestown 1

Singles

No. 1: Kaden Johnson, GF def. Connor Mullowney 6-7(4), 7-6(8), 6-1.

No. 2: Jack Lindgren, GF, def. Ryder Pringle 6-0, 6-1.

No. 3: Sam Rath, GF def. Kaden Williams 6-0, 6-0.

Doubles

No. 1: Gavin Loscheider/Stefan Curic, GF def. Cole Bennion/Rydern Lunzman 6-1, 6-2.

No. 2: Baylee Hatlewick/Isaac Mimong, J def. Adam Durrani/Mason Salquist 6-3, 6-4.

Minot 4, Jamestown 1

Singles

No. 1: Mullowney, J def. Mason Diehl 7-6 (12-10), 6-3.

No. 2: Charlie Wentz, M def. Pringle 6-1, 6-1.

No. 3: Rory Taney, M def. Lunzman 6-1, 6-1.

Doubles

No. 1: Connor Templeton/Peyton Huss, M defeated Bennion/Williams 5-7, 7-5, 6-2.

No. 2: Zach Diehl/Gage Jaeger, M def. Bennion/Williams 6-0, 6-3.

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